September Virtual Session: Incarceration & Re-entry

Date: September 9, 2020
Time: 9:00 AM to 1:00 PM

Location: Zoom (see reminder email or YW Boston Connect event page for meeting details)


Our objectives are to

  • Increase understanding of the complexity of our prison system
  • Discuss the challenges faced by leaders as they attempt to balance concepts of punishment, rehabilitation, and justice for victims and survivors of crimes​
  • Increased understanding of barriers to re-entry​
  • 9:00 Opening
  • 9:45 Sheriff Steve Tompkins and Superintendent Yolanda Smith
  • 10:30 The Zo: A look at life inside prison
  • 11:00 Re-entry expert speaker: Gabriella Priest
  • 11:15 Panel on rehabilitation, re-entry, and justice for victims: Liam Lowney, True-See Allah, Kevin Sibley
  • 12:30 Class discussion & closing

Complete the following readings before our program day:

Additional recommended:

Module 7: Inclusive Communication Skills: Questioning
  1. Watch Module 7, Inclusive Communication Skills: Questioning (13:19).
  2. Once you’ve finished the video, share your response to the Post & Share question below as a comment to the pinned post in the YW Boston Connect LeadBoston 2020 group.
  3. In addition to posting on YW Boston Connect, be prepared to share your response during our virtual session icebreaker.
Expert Speakers

Steve Tompkins (LeadBoston ’04), Sheriff of Suffolk County

Steven W. Tompkins, a member of the Suffolk County Sheriff’s Department since 2002, was appointed to serve as the Sheriff of Suffolk County on January 22nd, 2013 by Governor of Massachusetts, Deval Patrick. As the Sheriff of Suffolk County, Tompkins manages all operations at the Suffolk County House of Correction, the Nashua Street Jail and the Civil Process Division. In addition to providing care, custody and rehabilitative support for inmates and pre–trial detainees, Tompkins also oversees a management, security and administrative staff of over 1,000. [Read More]

Yolanda Smith (LeadBoston ’10), Superintendent, Suffolk County House of Correction

Yolanda Smith has been with the Department since 1995, beginning her career as a correction officer at the House of Correction. In 1997, she became a DARE (Drug Abuse Resistance Education) officer and worked in the community and in the public school systems. She has also served as Corporal, Lieutenant, Captain, Assistant Deputy Superintendent, Assistant Superintendent and in February of 2013, she was promoted by Sheriff Steven W. Tompkins to the rank of Superintendent of the Suffolk County House of Correction where she oversees an inmate population of nearly 1,800 and a staff of more than 500 trained correction officers. [Read More]

Gabriella Priest, Director of Innovation, Implementation, and Development, Community Resources for Justice (CRG)

Gabriella Priest oversees Brooke House, Sargent House, Watson Academy, Operation Integrate, Government Relations, and special projects for SJS. Gabriella has worked at CRJ since 2009, with Quality Assurance for SJS, and policy and implementation work for CRJ’s Crime and Justice Institute division. At CJI, Gabriella led juvenile justice policy reform in Utah, Kansas, West Virginia, and Kentucky. She had also worked on adult criminal justice reform in Georgia and Oregon, on juvenile justice implementation, and in higher education, the legal field, and state and federal government. Gabriella, who graduated from Suffolk University with a Bachelor of Science in Sociology and Criminology and a Master of Science in Criminal Justice, was named one of “Suffolk University’s Top Graduates of the Last Decade” in 2015, serves as Vice President of Suffolk’s College of Arts and Sciences Alumni Board of Directors, is a member of the Sociology Advisory Board, and is an adjunct faculty member for the Sociology Department.

Liam Lowney, Executive Director, Mass. Office for Victim Assistance

Liam T. Lowney began working in the field of Victim Services in the Middlesex District Attorney’s Office in 1998 as a Victim Witness Advocate advocating for the rights and services for individual crime victims.  In January of 2007, Liam was appointed as the Chief of Victim and Witness Services by the Massachusetts Attorney General overseeing the office’s services to crime victims and the Massachusetts Victim Compensation Program.  Throughout his career Liam has advocated for policy changes that impact crime victims including gun safety legislation, updates to the victim compensation and assistance statute, and Massachusetts’ first Human Trafficking Law.  Upon passage of the Human Trafficking law the Attorney General appointed Liam as the Director of the Human Trafficking Interagency Task Force where he led efforts to meet the needs of survivors. [Read More]

True-See Allah (LeadBoston ’09), Director of Reentry, Mass. Executive Office of Public Safety and Security (EOPSS)

True-See is currently the Director of Reentry at the Executive Office of Public Safety and Security. Prior to his appointment with the Executive Branch he held the position of Director of Outreach and Reentry for UTEC Inc. as well Assistant Deputy Superintendent at the Suffolk County Sheriff’s Dept. previously. Mr. Allah is well respected and versed within the field of re-entry and is often called upon for his professional expertise. His panelist credits include conferences hosted by Harvard Divinity School, Harvard Law School/Criminal Justice Institute, MassINC, the International Community Corrections Association, and the Massachusetts Association of Minority Law Enforcement Officers (MAMLEO). Having spoken on national platforms hosted by the U.S. Department of Justice, he was selected to participate in Cease Fire and in the national Value Based Initiative Focus Group. [Read More]

Kevin Sibley, Director, City of Boston, Office of Returning Citizens

Kevin Sibley brings over 18 years of experience in human resources, program development and grant funded initiatives specific to the well-being of underserved individuals to his new role as director of the Office of Returning Citizens. Before joining the Walsh Administration, Sibley worked as a program coordinator for Street Safe Boston, a public safety initiative by The Boston Foundation. He worked to reduce youth violence in a subset of Boston affected by high rates of violent crime. He also previously served as the founding Dean of Students for the Home for Little Wanderers, the oldest not-for-profit organization in the country. He implemented accountability measures and monitored programs and services for behaviorally and emotionally challenged students. [Read More]